Interviews. You have an hour, maybe less, to make an incredible first impression. But that’s tough! There are so many ways you could mess up, from arriving late to wearing the wrong clothes to sharing too much of your personal life.
Don’t worry though, we’ve got you covered. As a staffing company, we have plenty of experience with interviews. That means that we know what works and what doesn’t.
- Using Your Cell Phone
That text, email, or social media update is right there, buzzing in your pocket. Resist the urge to check it! Interviewers are trying to get to know you, and that can’t really happen when you’re staring at a screen.
Consider turning your phone off before walking into your meeting. Give your interviewer your undivided attention.
If you don’t, they might think you lack focus and choose another candidate.
- Not Asking Any Questions (Or Asking the Wrong Ones)
At the end of the interview, most interviewers ask if you have any questions. You should always have a few prepared to show your interest in both the company and the specific position you’re applying for.
Just make sure the questions you ask aren’t ones that can be answered with a simple Google search. If it’s information you can find on the website (“When was the company founded?”, “What’s your mission statement?”, etc.), don’t ask it. That will just show you haven’t done any research.
- Talking About Pay Rate Too Early (Or Not Being Able to Talk About It at All)
We interview so we can get hired and eventually get paid. But pay rate isn’t usually something you should bring up in the first interview.
If you bring up pay before your employer does, that puts you in a weaker negotiating position. And if you bring it up too quickly in general, your interviewer might think you’re only interested in the job for the money and don’t care about culture fit.
However, you should have some idea of how much you want to make in preparation for when your interviewer does raise the topic. If you’re unsure or throw out random numbers, you won’t look professional.
- Talking Too Much (Or Only Talking About Yourself)
On the one hand, you want your interviewer to know you personally. On the other, you need to avoid spending too much time talking about yourself. Keep everything you say focused on the job you’re applying for, and don’t let your answers go over a minute or so each.
Remember that you’re here to solve a problem the company has. They want to hire you to fix that problem. If you spend too much time talking about why the company is right for you instead of why you’re right for the company, you’ll run into trouble.
Have any more questions about common interview mistakes? Let us know in the comments section below!